13th August 2020

Bank security scam call emerges

The Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) has received intelligence on a scam involving callers pretending to be from a bank security team.

By JTS Staff
Journal of Trading Standards' in-house team

Fraudsters are calling the public and posing as members of a bank security team. The recipient of the call is asked to verify three large – and non-existent – sums paid using their debit card in various parts of the UK. The victim is then informed that their bank is supposedly investigating fraud occurring at their local branch.

In one reported case, a recipient was asked to send £15,000 to an account to “test security procedures”. To reassure them that the call was genuine, the caller asked the recipient to read out the phone number on the back of their card, and then said that the caller would phone back on that number.

The number was then ‘spoofed’ by the fraudster and the recipient, falsely reassured, transferred the money.

CTSI Lead Officer, Katherine Hart, said: “These types of scams attempt to reassure the target by ‘spoofing’ the telephone number of their bank when calling. Bank security teams will never ask you to send money to any account.

“If you have concerns then you should call your bank directly – do not rely on them to call you as any number can be easily spoofed on caller ID.”

Contact your bank immediately if you think you’ve been scammed and report it to Action Fraud, or if in Scotland dial 101 and report it to Police Scotland. Advice and guidance on how to protect yourself, or your business, from fraud and cyber crime, is available at www.gov.uk/coronavirus-fraud-and-cyber-crime.

Also, the public and businesses are encouraged to join Friends Against Scams and Businesses Against Scams, respectively. These initiatives aim to protect and prevent people and businesses from becoming scam victims by empowering them to take a stand against scams.

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